Not all real estate licensees are REALTORS®. A REALTOR® is a real estate licensee who had chosen to take an extra step toward professionalism and high ethical standards by joining the local, state and national Associations of REALTORS®.
And, while all licensees must follow licensing laws, it is only those licensees who have chosen to hold REALTOR® membership who are subject to the National Association of REALTORS Code of Ethics.
Further, some REALTORS® choose to subscribe to the Pathways to Professionalism, which sets standards for conduct that are not covered by the Code of Ethics or license law.
Local Board’s have the authority to enforce the Code of Ethics. The state licensing entity has the authority to enforce license law. The Pathways to Professionalism are voluntary and not enforceable by the local board or state licensing entity. However, individual companies may hold their licensees to the standards contained therein.